Talkin' Trash - Myths and Realities of Recycling and Materials Management

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Is black plastic really not recyclable? Do I have to break down cardboard? Join Mark and Karen to find the answers!

About this event

Join us for the last Sustainability Speaker event of the 2020-2021 series! To learn more about the series visit

Why do we recycle?

Recycling has many benefits including:

- saving energy and water

- conserving natural resources

- reducing air and water pollution

- conserving landfill space

- reducing greenhouse gas emissions

- assuring the sustainable existence of human life on Earth

Ready to talk trash?! Join Sunnyvale’s very own myth busters, Mark and Karen, to learn about the realities of recycling. Did you know Sunnyvale has its very own sorting facility? Mark and Karen will walk us through the history of Sunnyvale’s Recycling Program and discuss local recycling issues. Curious about composting? Sunnyvale is working on rolling out a citywide FoodCycle (food scraps) Program to follow new California law.

This is a FREE event sponsored by City of Sunnyvale and the Sunnyvale Sustainability Commission. Registered attendees will be emailed the webinar link in the days preceding the event.

Questions? Contact 408-730-7717 or

About the Speakers

Mark Bower's involvement with recycling started at the time of the first Earth Day. He went on to co-found Eco-Cycle, the largest recycling non-profit in the county. He then ran community-based recycling operations in Arcata, California and Bend, Oregon. Mark moved to the public sector to manage Mountain View's recycling and solid waste disposal systems. Since 1990, Mark has managed Sunnyvale's Solid Waste Program.

Karen Gissibl is the Environmental Programs Manager for Sunnyvale’s Environmental Services Department. Karen has a Master’s Degree in Public Health from San Jose State and BA from San Francisco State in Health Education. She has been with Sunnyvale for 11 years managing the SMaRT Station and implementing the City’s Zero Waste Strategic Plan. Her current project is to collect every scrap of food from all residents and businesses in Sunnyvale to comply with a new mandatory food scraps collection law!

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